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DPW seeks more snow money

January 'one of the worst months we've ever had'

February 09, 2011
STURBRIDGE — Additional discussion about the snow removal bylaw took place at a Board of Selectmen meeting Monday, Feb. 7, as a punishing winter has forced town officials to find solutions to problems they never saw coming.

Sparking the board's discussion was Department of Public Works Director Greg Morse's request for additional deficit spending money in order to pay for extra supplies. At its Jan. 18 meeting, the Board approved $60,000 in deficit spending to keep town roads clear throughout what seemed like one continuous snowstorm in January, and Morse is hopeful that this second round of funds will last until the end of February.

"We received an extraordinary amount of snow in January, which was certainly one of the worst months we've ever had," Morse said. "My guys are exhausted. It takes a lot of time and energy to keep up with all this snow, but luckily the equipment is in pretty good shape."

A few weeks ago Morse and Town Administrator Shaun Suhoski agreed that DPW crews were needed to assist abutters of Routes 20 and 131 in the removal of large amounts of snow from sidewalks. The snow removal bylaw that the Board had begun enforcing on Jan. 24 requires abutters to clear snow and ice from their sidewalks, but since MassDOT plows had pushed snow onto sidewalks, Morse and Suhoski decided that it was unfair to expect abutters to be responsible for clearing this additional snow.

For more on this story, please see tomorrow's Southbridge Evening News.

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